Derseree Archary, PhD, is a Research Associate at CAPRISA and Honorary Lecturer at the School of Laboratory Medicine and Medical Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Her main research interests are in defining the immune correlates of protection and risk to HIV-acquisition in the female genital tract. Her particular focus is to understand the transudation dynamics and the functional responses of non-neutralizing antibodies in the female genital tract in both vaccine and PrEP studies. She is a consultant to the HIV Vaccine Trials Network’s Mucosal Immunology Group and is also a mentor and supervisor to post-graduate students currently in the National Research Foundation of South Africa’s Centre of Excellence Training Programme at CAPRISA.
Cheryl Baxter, PhD, is a Research Associate and Scientific Writer at CAPRISA and Honorary Lecturer in the School of Nursing and Public Health at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Her main research interests are in HIV prevention, particularly strategies to reduce HIV acquisition among young women, and issues related to women’s sexual and reproductive health. She has extensive experience in the operations of clinical trials and regulatory compliance and was part of the team implementing the CAPRISA 004 tenofovir gel trial, which provided proof-of-concept that antiretroviral drugs can prevent sexually transmitted HIV infection and herpes simplex virus type 2 in women.
Dr Nigel Garrett, MBBS, MRCP, MSc, DipGUM, DipHIV, DFSRH is the Head of HIV Pathogenesis and Vaccine Research at CAPRISA. As Project Director of the CAPRISA 002 Acute HIV Infection study he is involved in important pathogenesis research such as elucidating mechanisms of the development of broadly neutralizing antibodies in collaboration with CAPRISA’s research partners at the University of Cape Town, the National Institute of Communicable Diseases and the Ragon Institute, Harvard University. He is a specialist physician in HIV and Sexual Health Medicine and has contributed as Principal and Co-investigator to more than 15 randomized clinical trials and large cohort studies. At the Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine, University of KwaZulu-Natal he works as Clinical Lecturer at the Department of Infectious Diseases. He has published on a range of clinical topics in the field of HIV and Sexual Health including HIV resistance, viral load dynamics and assays, point of care testing, new antiretroviral agents, TB screening and HIV disease progression. Currently, he acts as PI on the APPROACH mosaic HIV vaccine study and as Chair on the HVTN 108 Phase 1/2a study. Previously, he has served on the steering committee of the UK Collaborative HIV Cohort Study, was awarded the Health Protection Agency HIV Fellowship Award and gained experience in infectious disease epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Tanuja N Gengiah, B.Pharm, MClinPharm, MS (Epi), PhD is a research pharmacist heading the pharmacy support core since 2003 at the Center for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA). She has substantial experience in commissioning and managing research pharmacies, developing clinical trial protocols and investigational product management in phase II and III HIV treatment, HIV prevention, microbicide and vaccine trials clinical trials.
Her research interests include measuring adherence in HIV treatment and prevention, the study of microbicides for the prevention of HIV and understanding the clinical pharmacology of HIV/TB treatment integration with a particular focus on drug interactions and pharmacokinetics. She was instrumental in the development of innovative technology for measuring adherence in a microbicide trial. Her PhD focused on investigating ART and TB drug interactions during co-treatment with a focus on pharmacogenetic variation due to single nucleotide polymorphisms in drug metabolising enzymes in African patients. She has authored several publications on integrating TB and HIV treatment and on microbicides as an effective HIV prevention strategy.
She is an honorary research fellow with the Discipline of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal and a member of the Primary Health Care Expert review committee of the National Essential Medicines List committee with the South African Ministry of Health.
Dr Pamela P. Gumbi, PhD (Medical Virology) is a Scientist at Centre for the AIDS Program of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA). Her work focuses on HIV prevention in young and adolescent women. She is a project Director for CAPRISA 084 and CAPRISA 082 pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) demonstration projects. Her research has focused on studying mucosal immunology of the female reproductive tract (adaptive and innate immunity) in HIV infected, exposed uninfected women and HIV uninfected women. She has more than 10 years of postgraduate research training and experience in health sciences, specifically mucosal HIV immunology in young women.
The studies that she has been involved in have provided insights into the risk factors for HIV acquisition and transmission in young women. Her most cited article showed that if women are infected with HIV, and have high levels of inflammation in their genital tracts, they are likely to shed high levels of HIV virus. This study showed the important role of inflammation in HIV pathogenesis, and that inflammation is a risk factor for HIV transmission. Some of her other work also showed that women who had high levels of inflammation were likely to have to have high numbers of cervical mononuclear cells, including CD4+ T cells, suggesting that inflammation is a risk factor for HIV susceptibility and acquisition. She was awarded SA Fogarty AIDS Training Programme Scholarship. She currently supervises post-graduate students and is a CAPRISA Scientific Review Committee member.
Hilton Humphries (MA, PhD candidate) is a South African Behavioural Scientist working in the field of HIV prevention. He is currently a Scientist at the CAPRISA Vulindlela Research Site. His interests include understanding risk pathways and epidemiological risk in adolescents. He has been involved in the management of large clinical trials, adolescent cash transfer trials, socio-behavioural research, and implementation, qualitative and programmatic research.
He is currently completing his PhD, which aims to understand the ecological and geospatial factors contributing to adolescent HV risk and how these can inform the development of targeted Adolescent HIV prevention interventions. He is a member of the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Biomedical Ethics Committee and is part of the HIV Prevention trials Network (HPTN) Adolescent working group.
Professor Ayesha Kharsany is a Senior Scientist and epidemiologist at CAPRISA. Her area of expertise is on understanding the evolving HIV epidemic in South Africa and factors influencing HIV acquisition, especially in young women. She is the Principle investigator on two major studies. The first is the HIV Incidence Provincial Surveillance System (HIPSS) study and the second is a study on HIV Transmission Networks, which looks at why young women are at high risk for HIV, transmission dynamics and to identify the source of their HIV infection. Her research focus includes sexually transmitted and lower genital tract infections (STIs), more importantly on bacterial vaginosis, and the role of these infections in facilitating and enhancing HIV transmission. Kharsany has been a co-investigator for the CAPRISA 004 Tenofovir gel trial and the CAPRISA 007 RHIVA trial.
Dr. Lenine Liebenberg, Ph.D. is a Research Associate at the CAPRISA Mucosal Immunology Laboratory, and National Research Foundation RCA Fellow. Dr Liebenberg’s combined academic training in medical virology, microbiology, genetics, and immunology direct the scope of her research in understanding immune responses at the human genital mucosa. She has documented methods to improve genital cell isolation from men and women, methods to facilitate genital cellular immune responses in multicentre studies, and has characterised genital and systemic immune parameters facilitating HIV infection, viral shedding and HIV transmission. Her current interests centre on investigating cytokine and cellular biomarkers of genital immune activation and inflammation, their various causes and the consequences to the risk of HIV acquisition and transmission.
Dr Leila E Mansoor, PhD. is a Senior Scientist at CAPRISA and has over 10 years of extensive clinical trial experience, ranging from proof of concept clinical trials through to post-trial access studies and demonstration projects.
She has undertaken pivotal research in evaluating HIV prevention biotechnologies for young women, with a focus on microbicides, including the development and implementation of novel approaches to adherence support particularly for low literacy level and research naïve populations. Her research focus includes HIV prevention clinical research, microbicides, adherence support and measures in clinical trials, as well as social science research focusing on patient’s knowledge about, attitude to and perceptions of their medicine and disease state.
Sinaye Ngcapu, PhD, is a basic scientist in the HIV Mucosal Immunology Laboratory at the Center for the AIDS Programme of Research (CAPRISA). He is also an honorary lecturer in the Department of Medical Microbiology at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. His research interests are centered on studying the role of the commensal microflora at the female genital tract in modulating immune response, with HIV as the primary outcome, and susceptibility to other STIs as a secondary analysis.
Natasha Samsunder, MT, BTech (Quality) is a South African medical technologist who is qualified in clinical pathology and has over 21 years of experience managing clinical laboratories. As the Head of the CAPRISA Laboratories she is tasked with managing and directing the CAPRISA laboratory’s capabilities, quality and research agenda, ensuring that the laboratory functions optimally and that quality of testing performed in the laboratory is of the highest level. She oversees all aspects of laboratory including the site laboratories and collaborating laboratrories. She is a qualified auditor and assists many laboratories to set up and maintain their quality management system in line with ISO standards and Good clinical laboratory practices guidelines.
She is a voting member of the ACTG/IMPAACT Laboratory Technologist Committee and also works closely with all network laboratory centers and research partners to further the research agenda in the field of HIV, TB and STIs.
Jerome Amir Singh (BA, LLB, LLM, MHSc, PhD) is Head of Ethics and Law at CAPRISA. He is the Principal Investigator / Director of the Ethical, Legal, Social, and Cultural Issues (ELSCI) Program on Synthetic Biology, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He is also Adjunct Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada. He serves as an ad hoc Consultant to several UN entities, including the WHO, UNAIDS, UNICEF, TDR, and UNICRI. He is the Co-Chairperson of the HIV Prevention Trial Network’s (HPTN) Ethics Working Group, and a member of the HIV Vaccine Trial Network’s (HVTN) Efficacy Trial Working Group. He is a member of the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) Technical Task Team on Ensuring Protection of Human Rights and Improving Access to Justice and serves on the Advisory Committee of the Critical Path for TB Regimens (CPTR). He currently serves on several oversight bodies, including the International Ethics Review Board of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). He is an elected Founding Member, and two-term Co-Chair of the South African Young Academy of Science (SAYAS), and currently serves as an Academic Editor for PLOS One.
Nonhlanhla Yende-Zuma MSc, is a senior Biostatistician at the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa and a PhD candidate from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. She has substantial statistical expertise in HIV and TB research and was integrally involved in the landmark CAPRISA 004 microbicide gel trial and CAPRISA 003 SAPiT trial. To date, she has co-authored and carried out data analyses for over 20 peer-reviewed journal articles.
Dan Barouch (MD., Ph.D), is Director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. His laboratory focuses on studying the immunology and virology of HIV-1 infection and developing novel vaccine strategies.
Professor Hoosen Coovadia (PhD) is a Director at the Maternal, Adolescent and Child Health (MatCH) Health Systems and Emeritus Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. His research interests include the causes of morbidity, disability and mortality among Africa`s children and the transmission of HIV from mother to child.
Dr Amrita Daftary PhD is an Assistant Professor of Research in Epidemiology at McGill University, Canada, and an Investigator at the McGill International TB Centre. Her esearch interests include social contexts, determinants and impacts of TB and HIV/AIDS in diverse global settings, with particular interest in co-infection and drug-resistant TB.
Professor Tulio de Oliveira (PhD) is the Director of the KwaZulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP) and a full professor in the College of Health Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. His research areas include: HIV genetic data and bioinformatics software development.
Andy Gray MSc (Pharm) is in the Division of Pharmacology, College of Health Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal. His research interests include policy analysis (in particular, the development and implementation of National Medicines Policies), rational medicines use and the application of antiretroviral therapy in resource-constrained settings.
Professor Bavesh Kana (PhD) is Head of the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) node of the DST/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research and is an Associate Professor (Reader) in the Wits Faculty of Health Sciences where he studies tuberculosis with a focus on identifying new drug targets and biomarkers to monitor treatment response and risk of disease recurrence.
Dr Marian Loveday PhD, is a specialist scientist in the Health Systems Research Unit of the South African Medical Research Council. Her areas of research include health systems research in TB, drug resistant TB and HIV and the impact of health service performance on patient adherence to treatment and treatment outcomes.
Dr Lyle McKinnon (PhD) is an associate Professor in the Department of Medicsl Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, at the University of Manitoba, in Canada, His main research focuses on correlates of HIV acquisition in high-risk populations including young women in sub-Saharan Africa and understanding the role of gut homing receptors, co-infections, injectable contraceptives, female reproductive tract cytokines, the vaginal microbiome, immunogenetics, and interferon pathways as determinants of HIV infection risk.
Professor Penny Moore, PhD, is a Reader and DST/NRF South African Research Chair of Virus-Host Dynamics at the University of the Witwatersrand and the National Institute for Communicable Diseases. Her research, largely on the CAPRISA cohorts, focuses on HIV neutralizing antibodies and their interplay with the evolving virus. Her current research focuses on HIV broadly neutralising antibodies and their interplay with the evolving virus.
Professor Lynn Morris, DPhil, heads the HIV Virology Section at the National Institute for Communicable Diseases and holds a joint appointment as Research Professor at the University of the Witwatersrand, where she also completed her undergraduate studies. For the past 24 years she has been researching the virological and immunological aspects of South African HIV-1 subtype C infection, making significant contributions to our understanding of how the HIV antibody response develops. HIV vaccine development is now a major focus of her research and she is responsible for performing neutralising antibody assays on human clinical trials conducted in South Africa.
Morris received her DPhil from the University of Oxford, whereafter she completed a post-doctoral fellowship at The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Australia before returning to South Africa. She has supervised 30 PhD and MSc students and has published over 200 papers in peer-reviewed Journals, holding a current author H-Index of 51. She an NRF A-rated Scientist and is internationally recognised. She received several awards for her contribution to HIV vaccine research and recent awards include the University of the Witwatersrand’s Vice Chancellor Research Award (2014) and the South African Medical Research Council’s Gold Merit Award (2015). She is also listed on the Thompsons Reuters 2015 and 2016 ISI list of the 3000 highest cited researchers in the world
Dr Vivek Naranbhai, PhD , DPhil, a clinician-scientist, is currently a Research Fellow at the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard, a Research Fellow at Harvard Medical School and a Clinical Research Fellow at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, at the University of Oxford. His research work spans immunology, genetic epidemiology and bioinformatics in a range of infectious diseases, mainly in HIV and tuberculosis.
Professor Jo-anne Passmore (PhD) is Head of the HIV Mucosal Immunology Group in the Division of Medical Virology at the University of Cape Town. Her main areas of interest are: HIV/HPV Mucosal Immunology; genital tract, innate immunity, cytokine biomarkers, genital tract immune activation.
Dr. Christina Thobakgale-Tshabalala (PhD) is a Senior Lecturer and Researcher at the HIV Pathogenesis Program (HPP) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Her current research focuses on innate immune responses, particularly factors that predispose individuals to disease severity and their impact on HIV and TB pathogenesis.
CAPRISA was created in 2001 and formally established in 2002 under the NIH-funded Comprehensive International Program of Research on AIDS (CIPRA) by five partner institutions; University of KwaZulu-Natal, University of Cape Town, University of Western Cape, National Institute for Communicable Diseases, and Columbia University in New York. CAPRISA is a designated UNAIDS Collaborating Centre for HIV Prevention Research. The main goal of CAPRISA is to undertake globally relevant and locally responsive research that contributes to understanding HIV pathogenesis, prevention and epidemiology as well as the links between tuberculosis and AIDS care.